Gavin Williamson will continue in his role as education secretary following a cabinet reshuffle, alongside Schools Minister Nick Gibb. Michele Donelan joins the department as Universities Minister, taking over from Chris Skidmore who was dismissed. Other new additions to the education team include Vicky Ford, Gillian Keegan and Baroness Elizabeth Berridge. Lord Agnew, who was responsible for delivery of the careers strategy, has moved to the Cabinet Office, while Baroness Alison Wolf – famous for the Wolf report – has been appointed skills adviser at Number 10. Elsewhere, Chancellor Sajid David has resigned after a ‘power-struggle’ with Boris Johnson. He has been replaced by former chief secretary to the Treasury, Rishi Sunak. Robert Halfon has been re-elected as Education Select Committee Chair; the new members of which can be found here.
Commitment to ESF replacement fund
The government has announced its intention to introduce the UK Shared Prosperity fund by April 2021, to replace the European Social Fund. The article on the Conservative party website states that the fund will be designed to support the most vulnerable. But London Councils warns the move may disadvantage Londoners, and calls for devolution of budgets.
Save the date – Careers Summit 2020
This year’s Careers Summit will take place on 5th November – please hold the date in your diary and watch this space for further information.
|Task group information.|
Our position paper developed by the personal guidance task group is now available online on our website. Please share the paper with your networks.
Look out for our next position paper on employer and community engagement which is currently in development.
|News from across the sector|
Leave apprenticeship levy alone, urge employers – TES
Universities still fail to give three quarters of places to state school pupils, despite demands of ministers and regulator – Independent
UCAS boosts advice with information from Which? University – UCAS
Over 500 lecturers to come from industry as part of £24m package boost – FE Week
Education Secretary calls on sector to support UK WorldSkills bid – FE Week
T Levels – what are they and who is going to study them? – BBC
|Information, consultations and resources|
Financial Times resources
The Financial Times has a range of free resources and are looking to add to the collection. To give you a flavour of what’s on offer, there’s a free schools access programme here and a regular careers ‘agony aunt‘. They have requested ideas for the sorts of specific articles that would be relevant for careers leads – please send any suggestions to firstname.lastname@example.org
The think tank EDSK has published a highly critical report on the apprenticeship levy claiming that it is mainly be used to fund existing courses that are repackaged, particularly at management level. It proposes level 3 apprenticeships only that are solely regulated by Ofsted.
The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has published the findings of the annual Apprenticeship Pay Survey. The survey covers England, Scotland and Wales and findings are reported both by nation and combined as Great Britain. The reports include comparisons of pay and conditions for apprenticeships between 2016 and 2018, which is particularly interesting for England because of the significant reforms since 2017.
Overall, basic hourly pay for level 2 and level 3 apprenticeships has increased from 2016 (median basic pay is now £7.10 an hour). The median basic pay in England is lower than the Great Britain average at £6.95 but does still show an increase from the 2016 level. The basic hourly pay for apprentices at level 4 and above has also risen in Great Britain (median of £10.94) and England (median of £11.07).
The findings reveal large differences in basic hourly pay by framework/standards across Great Britain with the basic hourly pay figure for level 2 and level 3 apprentices lowest for Hairdressing (£3.70 median). Basic hourly pay rates increased for nearly all level 2 and 3 apprenticeships. The is the Customer Service framework/standard, where basic hourly pay has decreased.
The report suggests some change to the routes for entry to apprenticeships. In England, 53% of level 2 and 3 apprentices surveyed had already been working for their employer, compared to 64% in 2016. In contrast, the proportion of apprentices surveyed in Wales that were already working for their employer increased slightly from 71 per cent to 74 per cent. The figures for Scotland were similar for 2016 and 2018.
Local Skills Deficit – Learning and Work Institute
A new report commissioned by the Local Government Association and conducted by the Learning and Work Institute provides some fascinating insights into what skills gaps might exist in England over the next ten years. The report takes an innovative approach, modelling potential skills gaps in eight different areas (Essex, Southend and Thurrock; Nottingham City; Staffordshire; Gloucestershire; Greater Lincolnshire; Lambeth, Lewisham and Southwark; North of Tyne; Southampton and Portsmouth) to provide data both on these localities and on England as a whole.
The picture at the national level is bleak, with six million people projected to be out of work or in a job that they are overqualified for by 2030. The findings estimate a potential national deficit of 2.5 million highly skilled people by 2030, which could lead to a £120 billion loss in economic output.
The findings illustrated here indicate that urgent action is required to address the skills gap. The differences in skills shortages across the eight areas studied suggest the need for some local devolution as part of a broader programme of reform and investment to enhance overall skill and productivity levels.
|Conferences, events and training|
IEP Summit – 5th March, London
The Institute of Employability Professionals Summit 2020 is based on the future of work and covers the emerging labour market and associated delivery challenges. More info and book here.
Free Quality in Careers Standard events
Interested in achieving the Quality in Careers Standard? Find out more via three free events in March. Hear from schools and colleges who have achieved the standard – events taking place in Newcastle, Birmingham and Bristol.
National career guidance shows 2020
The National Career Guidance Shows are the only free to attend series of conventions for people passionate about careers and will arm visitors with the resources necessary to support and prepare young people and other job seekers, so that they can make a smooth transition from education, training or unemployment into working life. Visit for free – book your place now.